Iâ€™ve seen a few first ladies, the elegant Jackie Kennedy, the outgoing Ladybird Johnson, the long-suffering Pat Nixon, Betty Ford who survived being outed for alcoholism and became a spokeswoman for recovery, Rosalyn Carter, her husbandâ€™s partner in philanthropy, Nancy Reagan always perfectly turned out, Barbara Bush with her pearls, Hillary Clinton, the first viable female presidential candidate, and Laura Bush, woman of mystery.
While itâ€™s true that they are all white, they bring to the role of first lady a fair amount of individualityâ€“dare I say diversity?
So what am I to make of these two headlines on Reuters News on Yahoo? One woman seems to be tailor-made for the job,
WASHINGTON (Reuters) â€“ With her elegant clothes and perfectly coiffed blond hair, Cindy McCain looks the part of a U.S. first lady.
She is also well prepared for the role.
Heiress to a fortune estimated at more than $100 million and chairwoman of one of the largest privately held companies in Arizona, McCain has traveled overseas extensively with different philanthropic organizations, visiting Cambodia, Sri Lanka, Angola, India, Vietnam and other countries.
The other seems to have some rough edges…
ATLANTA (Reuters) â€“ Michelle Obama will bring the skills of a corporate lawyer to the White House if her husband wins the U.S. presidency, but she says her priority will be her role as “mom-in-chief” to the couple’s daughters.
Democrat Barack Obama faces Republican John McCain in Tuesday’s election. If the first-term Illinois senator wins, he will become the first black U.S. president and his wife the first black first lady.
I saw Michelle Obama speak at CCRI, and she was lacking nothing in the elegant clothes and hair department. She did get out on the campaign trail early, long before Cindy McCain began appearing at rallies and speaking, which created more opportunities for â€˜gotchaâ€™. And yes, sheâ€™s black. I noticed that right away.
What is a first lady supposed to look like? I see Cindy McCain in the Nancy Reagan mold, slender, perfectly made up, standing by her man. I see Michelle Obama in the Jackie Kennedy mold, energetic, accomplished, a mother to young children. Both of them are experienced travelers, used to a public life. So why does one â€˜fit the roleâ€™ while the other needs to be sanded down before she gets into the groove? What does â€˜All Americanâ€™ look like? Michelle, whatever you do, donâ€™t dye your hair blonde.